FaceFilter Pro 3.0 – Review

While at MacWorld/iWorld in April, I had the opportunity to catch up with the team at Reallusion.  They were showing their new FaceFilter 3.0 for Mac.  The program allows us average humans to do a lot of the same touchups on portraits that a PhotoShop expert would spend hours doing.   To say it is simple is to understate how easy and powerful it is.

Let’s walk thru a simple example of it… Using a picture I just took with the Mac’s PhotoBooth application.  Here’s the basic picture… I used a light behind my MacBook Pro in order to off set the very bad lighting in my office.

FF Pic 1

After you pic the file to import you are presented with two views of the picture, a before and after:

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The first step that you need to do, just like Reallusion’s Crazy Talk application, is to map certain facial features – this is called “Fitting”.  This includes the tilt of the head,

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each eye and eyebrow,

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the shape of the nose,

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the mouth (don’t forget to toggle the close mouth check box or you won’t be able to whiten the teeth)
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and the contour of the face.

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The application will try to auto identify these items (as you can see in the before images above), but you can tweak it as much as you’d like (the second image is my mapping).  I realized how powerful this was overtime, when I saw that it allowed you to deal with profiles and other angles.

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Once we have all of this mapped the real fun beings, we can now do the makeover.  FaceFilter by default will offer a quick makeover template.. And as we can see here… It’s not too bad.  Already you can see it has gotten rid of some of the blemishes on my forehead. My skin is not as oily/shiny as it was in the original picture. My eyes are highlighted, with a nice twinkle in my eyes, and I have eyelashes.

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We can tweak each aspect of the foundation, facial makeup and eye makeup.  Let’s have some fun by trying that now.  You can see some of the settings on the right hand side of this picture, but let’s talk about the clean:  I whitened my teeth, changed my eye color, changed my lips, and worked on overall skin tone.

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After working makeup, we can work on the shape of the face with the reshape options. The quickest weight loss program I have ever taken.  As you can see in the image, the rest of the image looks fine.. Even though we have reduced both the width of my head and the proportion.

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Finally you can add effects to the picture to really make it pop. Overall not a bad job with just a few minutes of playing around (total time 5 minutes).  You can spend much more time and really enhance the picture, and Reallusion offers additional brushes and filters to have an even more professional quality of the pictures.  I  highly recommend you try out the trial version from the appstore.  If you like it, I think the Pro version offers a lot of extra capabilities, and is really worth the extra few dollars.  Check it out and let me know what you think.   And thank you to John and Bill from Reallusion for providing me with a copy to play with.

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Day Three at MacWorld/iWorld 2014

And so it all ends so quickly – Thank you MacWorld for another great week of geeking out! Let’s quickly go thru the sessions I saw thru and then talk about the cool Apps and App Developers I got to talk to this week. I got to attend three sessions. The first was by Chuck Joiner from the MacVoices Podcast – Mac, iPhone, and iPad: The Stuff you gotta Have! I am so glad it wasn’t on day one, or I would have spent too much money. Actually, not really, most of the things he recommended I am already using. The items that made the most sense, that I could pick up, are items that I don’t need. The best recommendation that I hadn’t found before is the Scosche 12Watt Car Adapter the show floor had this as a $5 off special for $20, but as a Amazon Prime member I can get it for $19 and have it at home when I actually need it. The best book recommendation was Erica Sadun and Steve Sande’s – Talking to Siri second Edition. I could use this one, to get a better / deeper understanding of Siri.

The second session was called – Music Togetherness: How technology is teaching the world how to sing together by Jeannie Yang – Chief Product and Design Officer Smule. Smule is a cool group of app developers who focus on music and social apps. If you’ve not picked up any of their apps, I highly recommend doing so just to get a taste of the way you can sign or play with people around the world. Jeannie spent the enter talk showing very compelling and cool examples of how people are leveraging social music to meet, form friendships and communities. I had to pick up their Sing app and when I got back to the hotel tonight, I sang Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting as a Duet with someone in England. Way cool.

The Final session I went to is the one I go to each year – Future Tech. Each you the kids from the Hawai’i Preparatory Academy come and show of the projects they are working on. Over the last few years they have showed off work with the Emotiv headset, earthquake sensors and other cool things. This year, they showed work on HDR Panoramas (this is an ongoing project the new part this year was work with Drones). Using music to assess memories, mood, and cognitive function of elderly individuals in nursing homes. Work they are doing to create a wireless Sleep Apnea sensor (with the idea of potentially waking the person before they have a full event). How to identify energy patterns in the noise of telemetry data from an entire building (using social and other data they can identify the signature of certain devices in the data). Creating a ton of project with Raspberry PIs. And the final project was using brain wave data from the Emotiv head set to create music. Very cool!

I then went back on the show floor and talked with the guys from Reallusion. They were showing off their FaceFilter software for Mac. If you work with a lot of portraits, this software makes it really easy to do touch ups, change make up, and overall manipulate faces. Amazing software, I am looking forward to getting a copy and playing with it soon. Maybe I will get an updated headshot from this.

I spoke with the guys over BusyMac they are about to release a new tool, BusyContacts. This looks like a compelling improvement over the default contacts app on the Mac. I am looking forwards to when this comes out. The integration with their BusyCal looks impressive, but thats to be expected.

The show floor is always a bit of a blur, I wish I could get an iBeacon report of all the booths I stopped at… Speakers, Scanners, and Software. I also picked up the EverDock I mentioned earlier this week.

Day one of MacWorld/iWorld Expo 2014

Today was day one of the formal part of MacWorld/iWorld. Yesterday was a day of all day sessions, and a day of the MacIT conference, which runs in parallel to the show. I’ve been tweeting out a bit today on my personal twitter account – @michaelrowe01. The great thing about today was that I did the kick off session and a few other talks, but also got to spend some time walking around on the show floor. I didn’t take many pictures, but I did get to meet a few cool apps and app developers.

The first was Tappd – This is not Untappd (my favorite beer tracking app), but a social application recommendations tool that is hoping to address the problem that many of us have with the app store… the inability to find cool apps. I had a chat with @martinuttly and it seems like they may have something here. The App is free and they do not take funding to “improve” app visibility in their app. All of the recommendations are based on Tapps, i.e. recommendations from people in your social network. You can follow people you trust, and get their recommendations. I have installed it, and if you want to follow me in the app, I am using my twitter ID above.

I also had a chat with the team from Cloak. Cloak 2 is a very easy fire and forget VPN solution for the Mac and iOS, that seems to have a really good model. For $2.99/mo you can get a 5GB account of secure data. For $9.99/month you get unlimited encrypted data. But what is the neatest feature for me is that you can configure you device easily and sync it across all of your devices. When you define your account you can indicate which networks you trust. When you device is on that network, it will not enable the VPN, but anytime you are not on those networks, the VPN kicks in automatically. Very cool!

I got to see the developers of my favorite must have app – 1Password. The guys at AgileBits, always have a team of people on the show floor who can answer your deepest technical questions. While this is MacWorld/iWorld they have a version for Windows, and for Android. The Android version is only a reader for now, but there are rumors that a fully 1Password 4 version should be coming out soon! I can now fully recommended 1Password for people regardless of what platform they are on.

And finally I got to see my buddies over at Reallusion. They are showing off their latest cool toy for the Mac – FaceFilter. This tool is great for people who don’t have the time to learn all the ins and outs of PhotoShop but would do want to touch up portraits and other pictures with people in them. I hope to get a chance to play with this app soon and provide a deeper review.

I will try and get a few pictures tomorrow…and will add them to the blog.